4—Creating a sustainable future
‘Abel and his mother lived off the sea and the land …’ (page 19 Blueback). Find evidence in Blueback to support this statement and list the ways in which Dora and Abel lived sustainably. Use the sustainability diagram to ‘test’ this.
At what point in the story did Dora’s lifestyle become unsustainable?
Discuss implications for communities and the ways in which families, communities and governments at all levels need to cooperate to support sustainable living for all.
Dora wrote many letters to politicians to secure a marine sanctuary. Jointly construct a letter to a politician from Dora, seeking the establishment of a marine sanctuary. Use incidents described in the novel to support arguments and consider the use of both persuasive and formal language in producing an effective piece of writing.
The title of Tim Winton’s novel is Blueback: A fable for all ages. If it is a fable, what is the moral of the story? Compare with the moral in The Short and Incredibly Happy Life of Riley, ‘...you just have to be happy with a lot less.’
Discuss ways in which people can be happy with a lot less.
Global citizenship in action
Reflect upon the findings from the ecological footprint calculations. Brainstorm ideas for reducing the size of the footprints at home and at school, and creating more sustainable futures. Use a mind map to gather ideas.
Have students collectively develop a class wiki, or if computer access is limited, use a large notice board to which all students can contribute ideas and researched information, a sustainability proposal, or a submission to the school, their families or to the local community. Consult the Australian Government’s Sustainability Curriculum Framework to assist with planning.
Set aside a section for small groups to add planning for their presentations. Read case studies provided on the Australian Sustainable Schools Initiative website (archived).
Small groups prepare presentations to persuade the targeted audience to support the whole class proposal. Encourage students to use a variety of tools and multi-modal texts such as animations, PowerPoint, prezis, graphs, tables, video, and popplets to make their message clear and persuasive.
Brainstorm slogans and research quotes that could be used in the campaign.
View the wiki as a class and jointly plan the proposal.
Arrange a time to present the proposal to the targeted audience, such as the student council, parents, or members of the local municipal council. Using the jointly constructed letter from Dora as a model, write a letter to precede the presentation. Place letters on the wiki and conduct an online poll to select the letter to be used.